In March, Johanniter carried out a rapid needs assessment in Turkana County in the northern part of Kenya, severely ridden by an ongoing drought. Especially in rural areas the access to drinking water has become crucial, because most boreholes and other water sources have broken down or dried out. Salt water is the only source of water for people and animals alike. Big parts of the pastoralist families in the region had migrated due to the drought to far away areas in search of pasture and water and after losing lots of animals. Elderly people, women with children and weak or ill persons stayed behind in the settlements or villages without adequate access to food and water.
Therefore, Johanniter and its local partner organization AICHM (Africa Inland Church) started continuous water-trucking to the community of Nasinyono in April. Drinking water is delivered day by day from a borehole of 100 kilomenters of distance to a 50.000-liters community tank by water trucks. Thereby 600 households with around 3000 persons have access to at least 8 liters of drinking water per day, which will be doubled in the next three months to accomplish SPHERE-Standards as soon as possible. Further activities in health and nutrition sector are getting prepared; meanwhile a nurse has been hired to improve immediately health services in Nasinyono.
Johanniter and AICHM already have maintained project activities for the past six years to improve food security and livelihood for pastoral communities after a similar drought in 2011. Since then, dry areas with bushes among riverbanks have been made arable for agriculture and families started to sow and harvest cereals like Sorghum to improve their food reserves. Experts from AICHM trained community members in nutrition and agricultural aspects and income generation as well. In order to secure long-term food production, Johanniter supports worldwide families by providing seeds, tools, livestock and practical knowledge about agriculture and cultivating vegetable gardens. The community from Nasinyono still has some grain reserves, but absence of clean water makes a healthy and dignified life impossible.